Fila pays homage to K-Tel and Ron Popeil in a zany new TV spot titled "No C.O.D.s" for its Mash 2A line of basketball shoes. In case you're unfamiliar with the Mash 2A, they're the signature shoe of one Jamal Mashburn of the Dallas Mavericks. That's right, the cellar-dwelling Mavs, for whom poor Mash has spent most of the year on the disabled list recovering from knee surgery.
Faced with these disadvantages-working with a less-than-marquee name who couldn't dunk on the shoot-the FCB/New York creative team of AD Scott Bassen and writer David Rosen thought, why not a parody? So they ripped off those "Greatest Hits of the '70s" record spots, complete with a cheesy, shot-on-video opening and four pseudo-music videos peppered with fake song titles sandwiched in between. The videos all feature Mash in a range of music styles, from rap to industrial to R&B. The parody idea suggested itself, Bassen says. "Look at all the kids running around with bad product logos on their shirts; it's hip to make fun of bad ads."
The commercial was directed by Baker Smith of Tate & Partners, Santa Monica, with music by the versatile Nile Rogers of RTG Music. Additional credits to CD Sam Gulisano and editor Jonathan Smallheiser of Ian McKenzie Editorial.
TV ON TV
Amid the parking lot fisticuffs, ladies room lesbianism and barroom erectile embarrassments of the new Joe Pytka-directed Clothestime campaign, from Mendelsohn/Zien, Los Angeles, are a pair of cross-dressed gems that make Ru pall by comparison. In one, a cute girl is being petulant in her bedroom as we spy through the window; in the other, a cute girl struts out on a white cyc with a boombox and does a striptease to the camera. Both the cute girls turn out to be cute guys, and it's a wicked surprise-these ain't no Milton Berles in ball gowns. Woman's VO at the payoff: "If Clothestime can make Mark look this good, imagine what we can do for a real woman."
It's a major repositioning for a client whose image had become dangerously tired, says CD Jordin Mendelsohn. "It's highly emotional subject matter that, done in good taste, can make a big splash with a small budget," he explains. "Clothestime needed a more youthful, hipper attitude to appeal to young, sexy single women. Women who control the destiny, so to speak, of their men."
Sales are up, and brand awareness is up 32 percent, claims Mendelsohn, but the shoe is back on the other foot, so to speak. The second leg of the campaign features celebrities, leading off with a Baywatch babe.
Campaign credits to: writers Josh Weltman and Claudia Caplan; ADs Weltman and Rich Dahl; and producer Elissa Singstock.
EVERY PHOTO CD TELLS A STORY
Cramming a feature film into 60 seconds is how writer David Fowler describes two entertaining commercials for Kodak from New York's Ogilvy & Mather. "I simply sat down to write yarns," Fowler says of the spots, which start when a Gen-Xer has a photo digitally scanned and next thing is immersed in a wild adventure. Timed to the half-second, the cinema/TV spots move so quickly, he adds, that the challenge was "to make sure people would understand what was happening."
In one spot, a teen sees a speck behind his dad's ear in a photo, so he takes it into a Kodak photo shop and has it blown up. "The speck wasn't a speck. It was .*.*. a UFO," he thinks aloud. He tells the photo clerk that it's probably a pie-plate flying at 30,000 feet, and has it put onto a Photo CD so he can load it onto the Web. A shady government agent type, who's lurking behind him, gets a copy of the CD and calls the teen at home later. "I wish you hadn't done that," he growls, as we see the flying saucer in a hangar behind him. The teen says he's gotta go, hangs up and tells us he's busy merging the photo into a document for the World UFO Symposium. And just as the Feds are about to barge into the teen's home to seize the evidence, aliens swoop out of the sky and vaporize them.
The tag, "Take Pictures. Further," creative director Rick Boyko explains, manages to tie in Kodak's role in traditional photography while acknowledging its new digital products. Credits to director David Kellogg of Propaganda Films, editor Chris Franklin of Big Sky, Los Angeles, agency producer Lance Doty and art director John Doyle. Music scored by Piece of Cake, Los Angeles, and New York composer John Lurie.
NO KIDDING FROM THE HALL
Los Angeles-based creative director Charles Hall made an impressive directing debut in July with a pro bono anti-rape TV campaign that he first introduced as a popular print campaign over a year ago.
Shot though Coppos Films with none other than Mark Coppos acting as DP, the spots, for the Los Angeles Commission on Assaults Against Women, borrow the raw b&w quality of the print. Inviting visuals like cleavage or miniskirts are always the parting shot, labeled with small red text: "This is not an invitation to rape me."
One :30 takes place in a raunchy nightclub, where women are dancing in hot pants. The camera zeros in on a dancer's crotch and the message appears. In another, a young couple is at the altar, and as the groom reaches for the bride's hand with the ring, the message appears on a closeup of their hands.
"We didn't want people to know what they were watching for the first 27 seconds," explains Hall, who also wrote the spots. "Then we'd hit them with a powerful message."
Hall was a creative director at TBWA Chiat/Day on Infiniti till a month ago, when he left the agency to open Charles Hall & The Dynamic Young Hustlers, which he describes as a "creative entity that will not be limited to just advertising." In addition to developing a fashion line, he's putting a director's reel together and he's also applying the final touches to a romantic comedy screenplay.
Other credits to AD Eric McClellan, a creative director at TBWA Chiat/Day/New York and Team One producer Mila Stein. Jonathan Elias, of Elias Music, scored some of the spots; editing by Hank Corwin, Lee Cowan and Mark Goodman of Lost Planet; and sound design by Stephen Dewey of Machine Head.
Fizzy words to live by: "If it's genuine, if it's original, then it's real." MacLaren McCann/Toronto continues its half-decade long tradition of targeting Canadian teens in the public transit system with this recent print campaign for Coca-Cola. The plan is to "bring it all back to taste," says CD/AD Stephen Blair, with a "playful, entertaining and educational" presentation. Additional credits to CD Rick Davis, CD/writer Maura MacNeill and illustrator Barbara Klunder.
DDB Needham/New York copywriter Adam Chasnow says he's going on a run tonight. He's going around New York City in a van looking for bicycle bones-those stripped-down remnants of bikes-on which he attaches small yellow signs.
"Will the owner of this bike please stop by New York Cyclist for a free estimate," reads one, framed with attractive tire marks. On a lonely wheel frame goes: "The rest of this bike can found at New York Cyclist," and for the baskets of Chinese delivery bikes: "Your General Tso's chicken would arrive faster if this bike was serviced at New York Cyclist."
"It's kind of like getting a flyer put on your windshield," Chasnow explains. The guerrilla pro bono campaign is for New York Cyclist, a bike shop that funnels its profits into supporting the Urban Youth Bike Corps in Harlem.
Explaining that "there aren't enough indigenous bike bones in New York," Chasnow says they had to supplement by adding a few spare broken parts around town. And expecting most of the 300 signs to disappear, he carefully staggered the postings.